Dunedin businesses have received a boost from large
numbers of students' parents visiting the city, but a city
restaurant owner says more should be done to attract them at
other times of the year.
Hospitality Association of New Zealand Otago branch president
and Speight's Ale House owner Mark Scully said bars and
restaurants in the city had a busy weekend serving parents
who were in town to see their children settled in.
The impact of the accompanying parents went beyond the
businesses - predominantly in North Dunedin - which did well
out of the students throughout the year, Mr Scully said.
While many parents came at the start of the year, Mr Scully
felt the city could do more to attract them at other times of
''I think that's an opportunity for Dunedin. I think we
should be promoting Dunedin events to university parents
Events the city could be promoting to them included rugby
games and fashion week.
''They have got kids that they want to see; we need to give
them an excuse to come to town.''
Otago Motel Association president Richard Hanning said the
influx of parents made getting a bed in the city difficult.
''The majority of motels are booked out unless they get a
late cancellation,'' Mr Hanning said.
The retail sector also did well out of visiting parents, with
many asking accommodation providers for the best places to
buy furniture and other items, he said.
Tourism Dunedin chief executive Hamish Saxton said it did not
run any campaigns aimed directly at parents of students, but
targeted them as part of its broader efforts.
It did target parents of students two years ago, with
''moderate success'', but limited resources meant this was no
longer possible, Mr Saxton said.
There were ''many great reasons'' for parents to return to
Dunedin later this year with events such as the Paul Simon
concert, he said.